Starship Rubicon - wickworks
Been getting reports that Rubicon has trouble running on Microsoft's latest hey-know-what-would-be-fun-switching-your-OS update. I don't have a Windows 10 computer to test it/make a fix (and won't for the foreseeable future), so I'm just gonna declare it unsupported for the time being.

Sorry for the inconvenience. I just don't have the resources right now to fix it.

Edit: Sounds like even compatibility mode might not work. I'd rather people give it a pass than have a bad experience due to technical problems, so if you have Win10, I'd really recommend holding off for the time being.
Starship Rubicon - wickworks
Crescent Loom, the genre-shifted neuroscientific sequel to Starship Rubicon, has been launched on Steam Greenlight!

I depend on crowdfunding to make new games, so if you enjoyed Starship Rubicon and wanna see more, head over to Greenlight show it some love!

As a sidenote, backers over at the Kickstarter have put putting together some really elegant creatures that I'd like to share with you: check them out on Kickstarter!

Starship Rubicon - wickworks

Crescent Loom: weave neurons, stitch muscles, create life.

The Kickstarter is now live!

Update: we made it! Follow progress on the dev blog.

It's a bit of a genre shift: we're moving from space into the ocean. In Crescent Loom, players construct physics-based underwater creatures and weave scientifically-accurate neural circuits in order to explore an alien ecosystem.

After the events in Starship Rubicon, the planets of both humanity and the bio-engineering Alien Nemesis lay in ruins. Most surviving humans now sleep in cryopods collected by the Pilot on her warpath towards the Nemesis homeworld.

The Pilot now returns to one of the planets that she burnt from orbit and begins using a piece of Nemesis technology called a "Crescent Loom" in order to begin healing the planet and build a new home for humanity and the Alien Nemesis to live in peace. Despite your good intentions, many creatures of this world remember you -- and not fondly.

Unable to communicate directly, you must learn an unfamiliar piece of technology and let your creations speak for you through their actions and movements.
Starship Rubicon - wickworks
Hopefully the last patch for a while!

TLDR; to see some of the controller fixes, you may have to delete rubicon.options in the main game folder. (it'll generate a new one by default)

The biggest thing here is a not-abysmal controller scheme. Having designed the game ground-up for keyboard+mouse, it was a challenge to get the same kind of responsiveness from a controller. One note is that the main triggers on a 360 controller are not supported -- the default driver is set up such that if one is held down, it cancels out the other. Since I couldn't find an easy fix, I just left them disabled.

Also I JUST REALIZED joysticks haven't been working on linux or mac at all. I was able to throw together a fix for Linux (i.e. it works on my box, hopefully your milage will not vary), but Macs are still out of luck. Same goes for special Steam Controller support. C'est la vie.

The one thing I changed about gameplay was reverting the databank-gate challenge to before a boss instead of after. I missed the lull before the action and there were some problems on Linux where the databank was being set as the wrong faction. Should be fixed.

# test drive mode in unlocked hangar
# reverted the databank dragging task to pre-boss. Should fix issues with them being dropped as the wrong faction.

# better controller scheme -- polished both ingame and in menus
able to adjust sensitivity
# joystick: A or B always works in menus
# resetting joy axis in the options menu should actually work now
# resets joy axis on startup
# pressing a joy button on intro sets it to joy mode right off the bat
# gave joystick players extra lives in the final (secret) arcade battle
# PC controller names standardized to an xbox 360
# on death, controller pops into menu mode (so you can actually click the buttons)

# now loads music assets on start of campaign/loading instead of game start
# PD no longer shoots down dodongo's mines
# fixed bug where bulwark reflected shots get HUGE
# larger cryopod icons
# fixed bug where it would scroll through lists on any click after using the mousewheel
# tweaked the parallax stars, there should be fewer gridlike lines on computers that experience them
# cleans up unowned ship config files on pilot deletion
# if a profile somehow loses access to all ship, it'll default to a lamjet
# loading screen for on new_game // loading a game
# sometimes apparently the arcade battle became unwinnable -- gave all enemies a 20sec self-destruct timer if you're not killing anything
points correctly added to profile on campaign victory
Starship Rubicon - jbdodson
Recently I got together with Wick to do a retrospective interview discussion about Starship Rubicon and get this thoughts on this years launch. We talk about some of his new projects as well as some of his early memories of Star Wars and his start in game development modding Star Wars Battlefront II.
Starship Rubicon - wickworks
This last October, we got an offer to have Rubicon be part of a "deep discount" game bundle. Ten games were going to go for $2.50 -- an insane markdown, even before it got split eleven (including the bundle site) different ways.

How could something like that turn a profit? How can devs make a living if that's the landscape of sales? What does it mean for a couple thousand extra Steam keys to be released (for basically free) out into the internet? If you're interested in these kinds of behind-the-scenes economics, here's the postmortem I wrote up on the experience:
Starship Rubicon - wickworks
After a string of summer events showing Starship Rubicon, winter approaches, and as such comes the incredible march of the holiday sales. Starship Rubicon will join the legions of games on sale and we want to give people an extra incentive to buy the game at its super discounted rate so today we are launching a demo. If you haven’t tried Rubicon and have always wanted to this is your chance!

As everything awesome, the demo runs on PC, Mac and Linux and contains a tasty slice of the actual game: 3 playable ships and the entirety of level 2: Sol. As with most demos we keep some of the great stuff for the full meal deal but we think there is a lot here to try and it’s well worth your time.

Cheerful Ghost annoucement
Starship Rubicon - wickworks
Lemme preface this with some history: the original motivation for me to develop Rubicon was to see if I could make a better control scheme for Asteroids using the mouse. The core mechanics of the game are centered around it. The trade-off between moving and shooting, aiming and steering, and being able to smoothly and immediately transition between the two. Any port to another kind of control interface is going to be just that: a port, awkward and a little mismatched to the design of the game itself.

Alas, the conventions and expectations of the shoot-em-up genre thereby seem to have taken me by surprise. I didn't expect people to demand controller support with such vigor. I was hoping people would meet the game on its own terms. I didn't even bother to do a final check for controller functionality before shipping the previous patch, which was a mistake: plugging in a controller doesn't work, the button just flashes angrily. That was sloppy of me, my bad.

Good news is that it's now fixed. Plugging in a controller at ANY point in the game and holding a button down for a second or so will automatically activate controller control. Bad news is that I'm still not happy with the implementation, I consider keyboard+mouse vastly superior for this particular game. I'm still poking around with it and hope to update soon with a slightly more elegant scheme.

Until then, I'd like to hear any criticisms of the current setup + suggestions. Controllers are not my forte, and I welcome the comments of those of you with more experience.
Starship Rubicon - wickworks
After showing at the Portland Retro Gaming Expo (Jon's writeup of the event), it became apparent that some of the bosses (I'm looking at you, Dodongo) still had a couple bugs. I took the opportunity to wrap those tweaks up with the bugfixes that I've done since Steamlaunch into a new patch.

I haven't done a boatload of testing with this version, but how bad could it be? You can opt into the "stable" branch if you would like to roll back to 2.12 for whatever reason.

I would like to hear what people think! Probably the most visible change is the doubling of the dialogue + portrait boxes. It was a little jarring for me, but there were enough people that couldn't read the text that I decided it necessitated a change (and thanks to pixel art, it'd have to be 2X). Plus, although it was designed to be somewhat ignorable, people were missing some important information. If this is abhorrent to you, let me know and I may put in a "small dialogue" option.

Fly true, my friends.
- Wick

P.S. There is now an unlockable cameo ship from Hard Lander, which was made by my friend Nic Biondi who I've shown at a ton of conventions with.


# bigger dialogue box/text
# edge scrolling in starmap (ability key to re-center self)
# Hard Lander cameo!
# databank dropped by bosses, not given at start
# improved bulwark boss -- bigger, less damage, more knockback
# improved dodongo boss -- bombs do damage more consistently, it sits in the middle of a gravity well to make hitting him easier but more dangerous, minion summon tweaks
# option to force it to use OpenGL graphics.
# added ability to set arbitrary FPS in options file (semi-unsupported, I think it can do some strange things to gameplay)
# alt-enter switches to windowed

# beam turrets turn slower
# tweaked unlock costs and information
# allies aren't auto-repaired for the final battle
# pakiceph : bigger, front armour, no shield!
# "how do flamethrowers work in space?" description
# slightly buffed default zukhov
# "must have *rescued* at least one cryopod..." in stores
# shotgun+cloak too powerful, increase reload times, nerfed cloak slightly
# for multiple abilities in the statbox, show an X2 instead of multiple entries
# revolver bullets more of a trail
# moved store button to make it easier to notice
# realhuman doesn't suck up points anymore. it was too bad an effect
# press P at any time to print the current framerate to the log
# reduced collision damage for allies
# pilots start with 1000 points (so they can reset off the bat)
# option to offset joy axis
# bumped up starting points for sol to 350

# lias is too cool to hang out with you
# fixed bug with final boss death
# kickstarter shouldn't show up as an ability
# FIX ALLY MULTIPLE BUMP (esp. dovell)
# WHAT THE HECK IS THIS GRID EFFECT??? >>>> if you have it, just delete space_tile2.png from gfx/effectGraphics
# bubble drone orbits too far
# flushkeys on credit start
# on death in hardcore mode, delete the save
# nodes still target cloaked things
# petey shouldn't target buffered things
# cloak + death blossom stops most of the missiles from launching
# options menu is slow again... -> it was the constant joycount() call
# lias doesn't allow you to choose colors
# a little smarter graphical compatibility tweaks
Starship Rubicon - jbdodson
Greetings human. Wick and I will be giving a co-talk at this years Eugene IndieGame Con about Starship Rubicon from it's early stages to eventual Steam launch. We talk about the games humble beginnings, Kickstarter and also discuss the age old question "why make another indie game?" Spoiler alert, we ain't rich but we can hopefully convince you we had fun and learned... something. Oh and come by and check out our all new Cheerful Ghost / Starship Rubicon booth. We will have some surprises for people so come check it out.

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